I just love when you can take a classic recipe – in this instance, a spice bundt cake – and turn it into something unique and showstopping! Spice cake is a fairly traditional holiday dessert, often dressed up with cinnamon whipped cream or an orange glaze, but I found this little gem of an idea through Pinterest (my new obsession). All you need is a delicious cake recipe, one or two bundt pans, and a little imagination.
I chose to make a pumpkin spice cake with cream cheese frosting, dyed orange to resemble the skin of the squash, and not only was it delicious- it was SO EASY! By baking two bundt cakes and inverting one on top of the other, you create the perfect pumpkin shape.
Here is how I made my “Pumpkin” Pumpkin Spice Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting:
This recipe should be doubled to make two full cakes. I found the original recipe on AllRecipes.com, but I will list it below with my alterations.
- 1 (15 ounce) can canned pumpkin puree
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1 (18.25 ounce) package spice cake mix with pudding (or extra moist)
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour a 9×13 inch pan. Whisk together the pumpkin, cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, mix together the cake mix and oil. Beat in the eggs, then fold in the pumpkin mixture. Stir in the vanilla.
- Pour batter into prepared pan. Aluminum bundt pans tend to stick, so I recommend buttering and flouring the pan. Bake in the preheated oven for 35-45 minutes. Depending on the size and metal type of your bundt, start checking around 35 mins, and recheck every 5 minutes until the knife or skewer comes out clean. Allow to cool.
- Repeat in a second bundt, or allow your first cake to cool and make another cake in your original pan.
This is the Cream Cheese Frosting II recipe, from AllRecipes. It does not need to be doubled.
- 1/2 cup butter, softened
- 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 4 cups confectioners’ sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- Red and yellow food coloring
- Beat softened butter and cream cheese until well blended.
- Add powdered sugar and vanilla. Beat until creamy.
- Add 3 parts yellow coloring to 1 part red until desired orange color is achieved. I used 6 drops of red and about 20 drops of yellow, but you can adjust to your preference.
When the cakes are cooled, use a long knife to cut the excess cake off of the “flat” side of each spice cake. Apply a generous layer of frosting on one flattened side, and invert the other cake on top to form a pumpkin shape. At this point I recommend stuffing some of the cake trimmings into the hole so that you can frost the entire top and apply a stem. To frost your pumpkin, you can be as meticulous as you like. I chose not to frost each individual ridge of the cake, but instead applied a generous layer of frosting and finished it by swiping the whole pumpkin up and down for a vertical stripe look.
*Good tip, when frosting a cake, place a few small pieces of wax/parchment paper under the edges to catch extra frosting. When you’re finished, remove the paper and your plate or cake pedestal will be clean!
For the stem, you could use a piece of extra cake, cut into a small curve and positioned in the center on top. Or, if your neighborhood squirrels are as daring and meticulous as mine, use the stem that you find out on your porch where just a week earlier had been a whole pumpkin. Those squirrels literally ate every bit except the stem! But don’t worry, I thoroughly scrubbed it before putting it on my cake. Other ideas- use half of a candy bar, dip a marshmallow in chocolate, use a round wafer cookie like a cannoli or a Pirouette, or my favorite: use 1/4 of a chocolate doughnut (and enjoy the rest of it yourself, you worked hard).